>No :-(

>Borders are planning to close all of their UK stores. I love Borders, it’s like my mecca or something and i can literally spend two hours in there so this is very very sad news to me. And also when/if the Oxford store closes where, exactly, am I going to find a decent disabled loo to use other than there?! Actually, pretty much the only reason I go to Oxford is either to go to Borders or to go to the theatre. But do they not realise that when we go to the theatre we always go early and pop in for a browse and a loo break.

I really, really hope this doesn’t happen before Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is released. Because they are having a midnight launch party with owls and magicians and fancy dress and me and Sophie are going.

This pretty much means the only bookseller chain left (just books I mean) will be waterstones. I no longer feel love for waterstones, borders has enlightened me to a different way of doing things.

Damn you, amazon, damn you!

>One Song – Meme

>I keep seeing people do the One Song meme and thinking I should do it.  And then I clicked on Funky Mango’s blog and saw she had done it.  And I’m bored.  So I gave it a go.  I think it’s meant to be the soundtrack of the movie of my life.  All I can say about it is, I haven’t laughed so hard in so long!

Put your iTunes or whatever music player you use on shuffle and for each of the categories/questions below put exactly the name and artist of the track that comes on.  NO cheating!

Opening Credits:
Standing Outside The Fire – Garth Brooks

Waking Up:
We’ve Got Tonight – Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton

First Day At School:

But I Do Love You – LeAnn Rimes

Falling In Love:
Proppa Cuppa Coffee – Rolf Harris

Fight Song:

Slow Hand – Pointer Sisters

Breaking Up:

MTV Mash Bad vs Ghostbusters – Michael Jackson


Working 9 to 5 (dance remix) – Dolly Parton


Wheelchair Talking Blues – Fred Small

Mental Breakdown:

I Think We’re Alone Now – Tiffany

Ain’t That A Kick In The Head – Dean Martin

Who’s David – Busted

Getting back together:
One More Day – Diamond Rio


Crash and Burn – Savage Garden

Birth of Child:

A Whole New World – Disney’s Aladdin

Final Battle:

In Heaven There Is No Beer – The Dubliners

Death Scene:

Peace of Me – Natasha Beddingfield

Funeral Song:

Damnit, Janet – Rocky Horror Picture Show

End Credits:

Agadoo – Black Lace

>Bureau Bookcase Bashing

>Well, I would like to say that I love the Jazzy and I’m getting on great with it.



I would.



I really would.



Unfortunately, I can’t.

I do mostly love the Jazzy. But I did have a moment of “argh give me my old chair back” earlier. And I am getting the hang of steering it with the midwheel drive.

However we then come to the fact that I used it to get to the bureau on Monday and that was difficult but actually not as bad as I anticipated. I used it to get there again today.

And then we must face the sad fact that I managed to crash my chair into a bookcase there today and break said bookcase, almost set off a fire extinguisher and bash up my supervisors hand.

The bureau is dead small and pretty crowded and the turns are doable but pretty damn tight. It is wheelchair friendly but could be a damn sight more wheelchair friendly just by losing a load of the crap in there. But I was still absolutely mortified to go breaking a bookcase.

But I don’t think I can say I love the Jazzy and I’m getting on well with it. Much as I would love too.

Still, I managed to keep from screaming at one of the other workers when they started telling me my spatial awareness issues aren’t CP but because I’m a woman and also if I could be positioned in my chair so I could see the wheels I wouldn’t have any problem! I get some bonus good wheelchair using points for that, right?

>Reasons to smile


  • Hairdye
  • Yummy Healthy dinner
  • People who get “it”
  • Someone I don’t know other than because he works in a shop I go in a couple of times a week noticing my new chair and telling me he liked it
  • My iPod
  • I did some things I’ve been putting off
  • Time with Sophie
  • Sophie said I look thinner!
  • Warmer weather
  • (mostly) Brighter days
  • I went to the theatre to see Chicago last week and I’ve been listening to the soundtrack today.
  • My mum got into the theatre for free because of my CP so we split the cost of my ticket
  • My friend Sam and I have tickets to go to the theatre in London and see Equus in April.
  • We got top price tickets for that for the price of the lowest price tickets because of my chair and we didn’t have to pay booking fee.  Plus the wheelchair space is practically the best seat in the house.  RESULT!
  • Wheaties
  • Email from my brother
  • Knitting

>Letter to My Gran

>Darling Dearest Granny,

You used to use one or the other of those greetings when you would write me letters and I thought I would use both to start this letter to you. You were both of those things to me and so much more. More than I could ever express on paper or to someone who didn’t know you and didn’t know all the wonderful little and big things that made you who you were, who you ARE. My Darling Dearest Granny.

You’ve been on my mind a lot lately. Because you being you allowed me to do something that I’ve wanted to do for a long while. And if it wasn’t for that it wouldn’t have happened. I actually feel really guilty about that but don’t worry I know you wouldn’t want me too.

Of course I would give anything in the world to have you here with me instead of that – even if only for one more day. Unfortunately that can’t be and truly I would never wish you back because I know you wouldn’t want that.

Thank you for my new Powerchair Granny. I love it and I love you even more than that. I hope you realise that you are here with me and I think of you every time I use it. Please tell Grandad that I love him too and I’m sorry, so sorry that I can no longer use the powerchair he helped me to get. Again, I know he wouldn’t want that but I can’t help feeling that way.

How I wish you were here.

I have tears streaming down my face as I write this. Missing you, missing the rest of my family who has gone on before.

How I long for the day when we meet again.

How I wish that I can make you proud.

How I miss the hugs and the laughter and the kisses and the chocolate and spam sandwiches and millions of other things.

Thank you Granny for teaching me and loving me and most of all for being you.

You’ll be in my heart.

Lots and Lots of Love, always and forever and then lots more love than that,

Emma xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

>The Darkside

>One of the things that I really love about blogging is the fact that it allows me to “meet” so many other people I wouldn’t otherwise.

And one of the things I’m very excited about blogwise this weekend is the fact that we have a new disability/CP blog in the shape of Wheelyfast’s Words which is written by a good online friend of mine, Karen.  We’ve known each other for a while through Caringbridge but an actual blog gives the opportunity to get to know her more and I’m loving it.  Particularly as reading her two entries now I am struck very much by how despite the many ways we differ, our CP stories if you will, are extremely similar.

Although quite what she’s doing saying I put a funny spin on things, I don’t know.

If you have time to read one more blog today, why not go over and welcome Karen to The Darkside?

>”It is… it is Green”

>I have a new powerchair! A Pride Jazzy 1121. Photos to come as soon as my camera and I are on speaking terms again.

Well, I should probably clarify that, it’s new to me. But the person who had it before used it maybe five times and you seriously would never know it’s not brand new. It has loads of features that my old one didn’t, like tilt in space (which seriously rocks) and it’s dark green. That’s not the colour I would have chosen but I like it. I probably would have chosen black but I don’t know for sure and now i’ve got it the green is right for me – fits me if that makes sense.

And there is a ST:TNG reference in there too in a way because it makes me think of the episode Relics where Scotty asks Data what a drink he’s given is and Data goes “It is… it is Green”. Star Trek rocks so it’s pretty cool to have a chair that makes me think of it. And before certain people who read this make comments to me about that, yes, I do know how completely sad that is!

It’s got midwheel drive which combined with the fact that as a part of my CP I have spatial awareness issues is currently driving me insane. Basically, the controls to drive it are the same and I’ve got them down but the steering is totally different and I keep hitting things. With my old chair (and all of the chairs, manual or power, I’ve ever had) turned from the back which meant when I started to spin myself round my legs would move only – this one moves from the middle which means when I turn my bum and my feet both move at once and I am having a bit of an issue learning new boundaries etc because my bum never moved before. LOL

>My wheelchair is…

>When I e-mailed the manager of CAB about yesterday’s event (she was off sick, bet she loved coming back to that e-mail) I used the analogy that my wheelchair, and to a lesser extent my walker*, is my legs and told her that a huge part of my freaked outness was because if it had of been broken by that bloody brat of a child I literally would not have been able to get home.

I wasn’t sure she would understand that but she said she did.  And she said she’s sorry it happened and she’ll get back to me about the question I raised about insurance.

Anyway I thought it might be interesting to share some thoughts about what my wheelchair is.  If you have any similar feelings etc on assistive technology or other things that you or someone you know use, please share them.  I would really like to know how common my feelings are.

  • My wheelchair is all pretty and purple
  • My wheelchair is in need of a good clean!
  • My wheelchair is a little bit broken because I’ve loved it so much
  • My wheelchair is a Kuschall Champion
  • My wheelchair’s name is Kass
  • My wheelchair is my legs
  • My wheelchair is a part of my body
  • My wheelchair is part of my personal space
  • My wheelchair is something I am proud of
  • My wheelchair is something I would not be without
  • My wheelchair is where I am happiest
  • My wheelchair is something I am scared to be apart from
  • My wheelchair is not who I am but is an important part of it.
  • My wheelchair is my wings
  • My wheelchair sets me free

*the reason why I say my walker is to a lesser extent and don’t use it in the above list as because I am not very confident with it and can do a lot more with my chair.  My chair is what I would chose if it were a one or the other situation and is truly the one piece of adaptive/assistive technology that has made the biggest diffference in my life.  I’ve chosen to use my manual chair in this list as it is the chair I use most and I have a bit of a love hate relationship with my current powerchair.

>What is, and is not, a toy

>Dear you,

It appears that the following wasn’t 100% clear to some people so let me reiterate it:

When we tell people who are waiting to be seen that we have a few toys for their kids to play with, we mean the ones in the toybox. We do not now, nor have we ever, meant the computers, panic alarms, mousemats, the advisers bodies and clothes, the doors, the donations boxes or MY ELECTRIC WHEELCHAIR.

I know I’m not using my chair in the bureau and it’s just behind the reception desk but that still doesn’t mean that it’s a toy. Also given the fact that your child is about two I hope you realise that my powerchair weighs about eleven stone (154lb) and that if they manage to turn it on they are going to do some serious (if not fatal) damage to themselves.
And also I think this wasn’t made clear: you are responsible for your kids and you have to watch them. Watching them pull at my top and my boobs and giving them evils when i pull their hands off of me, seeing them break one of the donation boxes and tell them they are very naughty but letting them keep going is totally not what we meant by being responsible and watching them.

As for letting them look at my electric wheelchair while you read some leaflets, that’s just about ok because kids get curious. Letting her get so curious that she messed with my footplates and armrests and PULLED THE JOYSTICK OFF. Well that’s even worse. My equipment is my legs and had it been actually broken I would have been stranded at work unable to move.
Just be very very grateful that I didn’t realise your brat had actually done more than look at the chair before you left the bureau. Because you do not want to see me as angry as i was at that point in time. And also be even more grateful that I don’t have my new chair yet. Because that would have made me even more angry.

Let us hope we never meet again,